Federal prosecutors fouled out Thursday in the Rogers Clemens perjury trial — and their case against the former Yankee pitcher might be tossed.
An angry U.S. District Judge Reggie Walton declared a mistrial, scolding a shaken assistant U.S. attorney Steve Durham for showing a video clip that had been barred by a pretrial judicial order.
The video showed Rep. Elijah Cummings during a 2008 steroids hearing making references to Andy Pettitte, who admitted to using the drugs, and conversations the recently retired Yankee said he had with his wife about Clemens regarding human growth hormone.
Walton said he’ll hold a hearing Sept. 2 on whether to restart the trial with a new jury or to simply toss it out because it would represent double jeopardy for Clemens.
With that, the biggest and possibly last major criminal trial to emerge from baseball’s steroid era, expected to include testimony from well-known former Yankees, came to a halt.
Clemens, standing by the defense table in a dark suit with an orange tie, didn’t react or even smile at the sudden and stunning turn in his trial. He didn’t speak to reporters afterwards, but stopped to sign autographs.